ODI series Ep. 1 | Social protection provisions to refugees during the Covid-19 pandemic

This is the first episode of the “Covid-19: a turning point for social protection?” podcast series.

In the months of June and July, the Social Protection Podcast is hosting a special series in partnership with ODI and GIZ. Across six episodes, our guest host Francesca Bastagli, Director of the Equity and Social Policy programme and Principal Research Fellow at ODI, will moderate conversations around the guiding question: “Covid-19: a turning point for social protection?”.

These six episodes are part of an ODI research project, funded by GIZ, on the emerging evidence and learning from social protection measures adopted in the early months, and within the first year, of the onset of the Covid-19 crisis. It asks how effective have social protection responses to Covid-19 to date been, especially for some of those hardest hit, including refugees, women, informal workers and people living in urban areas? What policy features enabled or hindered adequate crisis response? And, while many of the measures are temporary, what potential opportunities and risks do they present for strengthening social protection in the long term?

The ODI-GIZ study covers six thematic areas, each with an accompanying paper. Each week of this podcast special series, Francesca will be joined by the lead author of one of the papers, along with an expert discussant.

This first episode is on social protection and refugees. Even before Covid-19, refugees were among the most marginalised in their host countries, with restrictions on their access to employment, social protection, healthcare and other public services. This left them especially exposed to the impacts of the pandemic. Efforts to extend or step up provision to refugees include: the extension of national social protection policies to refugees and alignment or integration of humanitarian led responses with social protection government measures. How effective have these been? What are the emerging lessons and is this a turning point for extending social protection to refugees in a more permanent fashion?

This episode was inspired by the ODI-GIZ project thematic paper “Social protection provisions to refugees during Covid-19: lessons learned from government and humanitarian responses.” by Jessica Hagen-Zanker and Nathalie Both (2021).

Our guests this week are:

  • Jessica Hagen-Zanker, Senior Research Fellow, ODI
  • Andrew Mitchell, Senior Social Protection Officer, Division of Resilience and Solutions, UNHCR

Episode links

Take socialprotection.org's 2021 Satisfaction Survey

Social protection response to Covid-19 and beyond: Lessons learned for adaptive social protection

Webinar recording - Taking stock at the one-year mark: social protection during COVID-19 and beyond

Social protection responses to forced displacement

Cash transfers to Syrian refugees in Lebanon: promoting social cohesion and protection?

UNHCR Social protection responses to COVID-19 for forcibly displaced persons

UNHCR Cash Assistance and COVID-19 Main Findings from Post-Distribution Monitoring Report

UNHCR Cash Assistance and COVID-19: Emerging Field Practices I

UNHCR Cash Assistance and COVID-19: Emerging Field Practices II

UNHCR COVID19 Emerging practices - Livelihood and Economic Inclusion


Other episodes in this series

ODI Series Ep. 2 | National cash transfer responses to Covid-19: operational lessons

ODI Series Ep. 3 | Covid-19: crisis as opportunity for urban cash transfers?

ODI Series Ep. 4 | Have social protection responses to Covid-19 undermined or supported gender equality?

ODI Series Ep. 5 | ODA financing for social protection: lessons from the Covid-19 crisis response

ODI Series Ep. 6 | Covid-19 crisis: opportunities and risks for extending social protection to informal workers